Java, a general-purpose programming language, is a class-based, object-oriented programming language and tops the list of the preferred programming language by IT companies to develop their software applications. Learning Java Programming Language has its own benefits.

Java is both a programming language and a platform which follows a particular syntax and style. A Java Platform is a particular environment within which Java Programming Language applications run.

Java has several platforms, as discussed in following discussion, which consist of several Java Virtual Machine (JVM) and Application Programming Interface (API).

Today, we are going to discuss various types of Java applications, Java applications examples and many other important aspects.

The overall aim of the blog is to help our readers understand:

  • What are the different Java platforms or Java editions?

  • Differences between Java SE and Java EE

  • Different categories of Java applications

  • What is Java commonly used for?

  • Different career paths for Java developers.

The Java Programming Language Platforms

Initially let us focus our attention towards understanding the different Java platforms or Java editions.

Java comes up with different platforms for developing specific kinds of applications. Following is the list Java platform or Java editions. Each of the Java platforms consists of Java Virtual Machine and Application Programming Interface (API).

There are 4 platforms of the Java Programming language as discussed below:

  • Java platform, Standard Edition (Java SE)
  • Java platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE)
  • Java platform, Micro Edition (Java ME)
  • Java FX (Java FE)
Different platforms of Java

      Let us discuss each of the above platforms independently.

  • Java platform, Standard Edition (Java SE): Java SE, a part of Java software-platform family, uses Java Programming Language to develop standalone applications. It provides the core functionality of Java. Java SE was earlier known as Java 2 Platform, Standard Edition (J2SE).
    Java SE contains core API, virtual machine, development tools, and other class libraries. It is implemented by the Java Development Kit (JDK)
  • Java platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE): Java EE, a part of Java software platform family, is based on Java SE specification. It contains Java APIs that can be used to write server-side applications. Java EE is earlier known as Java 2 platform, Enterprise Edition (J2EE).
  • Java platform, Micro Edition (Java ME): Java ME, a part of Java software-platform family, uses the Java programming language and provides APIs to develop Mobile applications. Java ME was earlier known as Java 2 Platform, Micro Edition (J2ME).
  • JavaFX: It is a part of Java software platform family that is used to create rich internet applications. It uses a lightweight user-interfaces API. The applications built using JavaFX can run on devices like desktop computers, mobile phones, etc.

Difference between Java Platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE) and Java Platform Standard Edition (Java SE):

Java SE Java EE
Java SE is a platform used for developing stand-alone applications Java EE is a platform used for developing Web and Enterprise applications
Java SE platforms consist of Virtual Machine, Development tools and deployment technologies for developing applications Java EE platforms provide an API and runtime environment for developing applications

As we all know, Java Programming Language is used to develop different types of software applications. Its unique features make it a preferred language in the IT industry to build various types of software projects. But many people have no clear idea of exactly what kind of software application can be developed using Java.

Even though the list of the types of applications is big, we have categorized the entire list types into 4 different broader categories.

4 Popular Categories of Java Applications:

  • Stand-alone applications
  • Mobile applications
  • Web applications
  • Enterprise applications.

Stand-alone applications:

Stand-alone applications in Java

A stand-alone application is exactly what its name implies, i.e., a software application which stands on its own. These software applications run without interacting with other devices over the Internet or on any other medium. They have high efficiency and  user interface flexibility.

Java SE is used for developing Java standalone applications. This application can be used by a single person at a time. Comparatively to other types of Java based applications, stand-alone applications are faster to access.

Some features of Stand-Alone software:

Let us look into some of the features of stand-alone software:

  1. Internet connection not required: These applications don’t require an internet connection to run on your computer. Once you install the software, the application will start functioning itself.
  2. Runs separately from all other computer processes: Some standalone applications run on their own without relying on any other software in order to function. One example of such application is an Operating System.
  3. Doesn’t need an installation process: Some stand-alone applications need not to be installed on your computer and can be stored in a separate disc. Such software doesn’t take up space on your computer hard disk because they can be stored in an external disc.

Standalone applications help in providing the exact requirements to the users at a detailed level, as they are focused towards providing a certain solution. But sometimes they can create problems if you integrate them with other software packages as they are meant to be used alone, not as an add-on to other software.

Mobile applications:

The success factor of any programming language depends on the level at which it helps the programmers to develop the applications. Providing good tools will help  entry-level programmers to get started easily and make the experienced programmers more productive.

Mobile application development in Java

One  factor for the success of Java programming language is the flexibility it provides in developing mobile applications. Today, Java mobile applications help Android operating system dominates the mobile application world as they are developed using Java.

Java ME software development kit contains all the necessary tools such as APIs, debugger, compiler, and emulator, and is used for developing mobile applications.

Why did Android prefer Java for developing its applications? The reasons are simple and are as follows:

  • Java is a known programming language for many developers
  • Java has an Object-Oriented Concept
  • Java can run on Virtual Machine; so, there is no need to recompile for different phones
  • Java provides better development tools.

If you are well aware of the Java programming language, then creating applications for Android is very easy. These benefits make Java Mobile Applications popular among Java applications.

Web applications:

Java web based applications are distributed applications which run on a number of computers that use a network or a server to communicate. Java web service applications are useful for enterprises as they help to update and maintain without the need for installing the software on the client computers.

Web application development in Java

Benefits of Java web applications are:

  • They are cost-effective to develop
  • Web applications can be accessed from anywhere
  • Can be connected with any device easily
  • Information can be easily accessed.

Java is the preferred programming language for developing web applications. It uses Java EE for developing web applications, as it provides services simplifying the challenges faced by web developers when building modern web applications.

Some of the reasons why Java is used to develop web application are:

  1. Java supports a vast array of libraries: Java is considered a powerful programming language because of its rich set of libraries. Java supports a large number of libraries and can be used as the basic building blocks of the enterprise solution.
  • Java is easy to learn: Java is one of the simplest programming languages to learn as it has a very easy coding structure. There are many resources available to learn Java. Today many schools and colleges are teaching Java programming language to their students. There are many Java online courses at Simpliv which can be accessed to further enhance your learning.
  • Easy to scale: Java programming language is easy to scale as the complexity of requirements increases. This helps the enterprises to rampup their application development as per the requirement.
  • Java is platform independent: Java is platform-independent language. This allows the developers to write the code only once and run it many times on different Java platforms.
  • Java has powerful development tools: It is one of Java’s unique features. It has the support of some powerful Integrated Development Environment (IDE’s) like Eclipse and NetBeans which allow the developers to write the code easily.

Considering all these features, Java has emerged as the preferred choice of programmers to develop web applications.

Enterprise applications:

Enterprise application is a large software application developed to meet the   requirements of large corporations, agencies, and governments. Enterprise Java Enterprise Edition (Java EE) is the platform that provides API and runtime environment, which is used for developing enterprise software.

Enterprise application provides business logic support functionality, which helps to improve enterprise’s productivity and efficiency. This platform provides a development model, API, and runtime environment, which help to reduce the complexity of enterprise application development.

Some of the Enterprise software categories are:

  • Customer Relationship Management
  • Content Management
  • Enterprise Resource Planning and Business Process Management
  • Automated Billing System
  • Human Resource Management
  • IT Service Management
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Business Intelligence.      

What is Java commonly used for?

As we discussed above, in today’s world, Java has many applications. For example, Java is used in developing mobile applications, as well to develop things like web applications and enterprise applications. Java is also used for developing many stand-alone application as well as to develop many gaming software.

Basically, we can say Java is one of the major programming languages for creating software applications.

Career paths for Java developers:

This brings us to the last part of our discussion, where we will quickly look at the various career paths for a Java Developer. Irrespective of whether you are an experienced Java professional or you are at beginner level to learn Java there is a huge scope for Java developers in the IT industry. Salary and designation vary across the different organization based upon your experience level and the skill set you have.

These are a few Job roles pertaining to Java that are trending in the IT industry.

  • Web developer
  • Application developer
  • EJB developer
  • Android developer.     


This guide is not limited to just understanding the different categories of Java applications, but  to also discuss other important aspects, such as different Java platforms, what is Java commonly used for and about career prospects for Java developers.

Hope our readers have found some valuable information reading the blog. Let us know which category of Java applications appeals the most to you and why.

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